Each year, hundreds of stray and unwanted dogs are collected by councils and rescue centres across the country.
Neutering prevents unwanted litters of puppies and can help reduce the number of unwanted dogs.
Neutering is the process by which pets are surgically prevented from reproducing.
In the case of males the operation involved is termed castration; in females it is called spaying.
A dog can be castrated at any age but it is generally thought best to wait until he is physically mature before doing so (this can vary from 6 to 18 months depending on breed; smaller breeds mature much quicker). In bitches spaying is normally done after the first season.
Benefits for pets
- It can help reduce certain types of cancers and infections which are common in non-neutered dogs.
- With female dogs, neutering stops them coming into season so prevents mess in the house and also stops unwanted attention from male dogs.
- With males, it can help prevent roaming behaviour.
- Neutering does not cause fat pets. It is true that a dog’s ability to metabolise its food will lessen after neutering, so therefore it is necessary to feed smaller portions of food than before. As the owner, you are responsible for ensuring your dog is not fed too much.
- It is not ‘good’ for a bitch to have a least one litter before being spayed – if anything there is more risk to your dog during pregnancy than if she was spayed after her first season.
- Neutering does not change a dog’s personality -although some unwanted behaviour may cease (such as excessive territory marking, straying away from home, destructiveness and mounting in male dogs).
- Neutering reduces the risks of womb infections and false pregnancies in older female pets. It also saves them from mood swings during season.
- Neutering does not reduce the efficiency of a working dog - in fact it frees them from hormonal changes and frustrations leaving them better able to concentrate on their work.